I shared Part 1 the other week and promised to share the next 15 books in a second post, so here it is, baby! 

I don’t have much more to add to this introduction though so I’ll dive straight in… Please let me know of any recommendations below, I love ghost and Gothic stories, and crime/mystery.

The House by the Sea by Louise Douglas

God, I really should get better at making notes after I finish a book because for the life of me I cannot remember much about this story. I marked it as average but I do remember enjoying it, and I distinctly remember the way the house and the central relationship is described. That’s about it. 3/5

Pine by Francine Toon

I loved this book and reviewed it properly here. Actually a perfect read for right now, while it’s freezing outside and the nights are drawing in. I think about it often. 4/5

The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy

I wasn’t crazy about the way this is written but I do admire the way Ellroy can spin a yarn. This one adds a fictional slant to The Black Dahlia’s backstory, and it’s incredibly dark and sad. It isn’t the worst way to spend a bit of down time and is probably a good shout if you have even a passing interest in crime/hard-boiled detective fiction. 3/5

The Wayward Girls by Amanda Mason

I reviewed this here and as with Pine, I often find myself thinking about this book again. To be honest it reminded me so much of the Enfield Haunting that it lead me into reading my next book. Very unsettling, bit of a messy climax. 4/5

This House is Haunted: The True Story of the Enfield Poltergeist by Guy Lyon Playfair

So this is a cracker because it’s somewhat infamous but it’s not the most entertaining of reads. Honestly, while the real-life story is fascinating and one I know a decent amount about, THIH is quite a matter of fact re-telling of the story. It did pad things out when it came to the things Janet Harper experienced (like bloody teleporting into a different HOUSE) so it wasn’t a waste of time by any means. I would still recommend it to anyone into the supernatural. 3/5

Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams

Full review here. 4/5

The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty

The film adaptation of this book is such a classic, one I have fallen in love with more and more over the years – and admittedly did not quite get when I first saw it. I will blame youth and a less sophisticated palette for that. But the book had eluded me until this year and I love it. It’s very vivid, jarring at times and adds more layers to the central characters. Namely Regan and her mother, and Father Karras. A masterpiece and yes, even better than the film, which is near perfect in my eyes. 5/5

The Missing by Daisy Pearce

My bloody clever friend Daisy wrote this banger, her second published novel. And, while I enjoyed her debut The Silence back in February, I think this one is even better. It’s melancholy and beautifully crafted with a satisfying conclusion. I cried it was so heart-wrenching and I also really loved the two central women. Loved. 5/5

Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff

I loved this book, it’s truly one of the most magical things I’ve read this year. I don’t feel quite the same about the HBO adaptation, which admittedly I haven’t finished yet and should probably give more of a chance. But this is just lovely – full review here. 5/5

Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid

Full review here. Spoiler alert – I loved it. 5/5

How to Disappear by Gillian McAllister

Another from GA and another really bloody stressful premise. I enjoyed this one but I found myself quite frustrated by the actions of most of the characters which probably says a lot about me and my fear of authority, than them. I guess what it’s trying to say is that you’d do anything for love, reckless or no. 4/5

A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay

There was a definite theme running through the centre of my reading choices this year and this just adds to the canon. I liked this one a lot which very much calls back to The Exorcist. I did a full review here. 5/5

You and Me by Nicola Rayner

Full review here. 5/5

The Lost Ones by Anita Frank

This was a wonderfully vivid tale and generally made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. Full review here. 5/5

Bag of Bones by Stephen King

This one felt like it took forever and I have many thoughts about it. I am still processing it to be honest – there were parts I detested – and I want to do a full review when I’m ready. So the notes for now: overall I thought this was really interesting and some of it worked brilliantly. But the bits that didn’t, really didn’t. Let’s not pretend that Mr King isn’t sometimes rather problematic and this has evidence of that in several places. I will always love him but it has to be said. 4/5

What have you been/are you reading?